After coming to Mexican California in 1822 on a whaling ship, Englishman William Richardson decided to stay.
He married María Antonia Martínez, the daughter of Presidio Commander Ygnacio Martínez (after whom the city of Martinez is named).
As a Mexican citizen, Richardson received a land grant for which the city of Sausalito is named: Rancho Saucelito — “Little Willow Grove”. Richardson eventually became a pioneer of the San Francisco area.
By grafting himself onto a family of Californios, Richardson also seems to have shared their fate in real estate, losing most of his lands after the U.S. takeover.
An interesting side note: Richardson Bay, which is named after him, was originally known as Ensenada de la Carmelita, in honor of the Carmelite religious order. Locals knew it as Puerto de los balleneros or “Whalers Cove,” attesting to the importance of the whaling industry in early California.
To learn more about William Richardson, check out Scott Fletcher’s article.